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Water, mineral and energy fluctuations in decomposing cattle dung pats
- UNDERHAY, V. H. S., DICKINSON, C. H.
- Grass and forage science 1978 v.33 no.3 pp. 189-196
- calcium, cattle manure, energy, feces, ions, iron, leaching, magnesium, mineral content, nitrogen, organic matter, rain, summer
- Moisture and mineral concentrations and calorific values of cattle dung pats were studied under field conditions. The rate of moisture loss from dung pats varied according to the season but the dung was rarely re‐wetted by rainfall. Soluble mineral ions were only leached from pats by prolonged rainfall. Magnesium was particularly resistant to leaching. In the summer months about 15% of the organic matter in the dung was lost over 2 months. The calorific value of the dung decreased by 18% in the same period. The loss of organic matter resulted in a concentration effect in calcium, iron, magnesium and nitrogen.